Decision Support System Plan – Computer Systems Analysis & Design II

Decision Support System Plan – Computer Systems Analysis & Design I

1.      The Scenario

 Home Depot is seeking to cut on costs. Some of the areas which have been identified tend to be hot topical issues every time changes are attempted. These include the decision to source products domestically or having them imported. Others include the reduction of the number of employees as well as streamlining service delivery by redefining chores, job assignments, as well as supervision. The business also purposes to put up an information system that will increase positive output and reduce on cost.  Even though the choice of the system has been inspired by the kind of challenges which firms like Home Depot experience while attempting trade-offs, it is important to appreciate that this is something that happens with every other organization. Therefore, there is the need for a ‘what if’ scenario so as to analyze situations and come-up with all the possible management outcomes. The issue, therefore, is facilitating the prediction of the behavior of the stakeholders on the basis of certain managerial decisions.

2.      System Description

The proposed system is called the Resolution Central Decision Support System. This is a Decision Support System, or DSS, that can be exploited by any organization to achieve its streamlining activities. In this case, the dependent variable is enhanced performance. This is defined by increased productivity, enhanced competitive advantage of the organization in question, as well as improvement in customer service. The customers should, actually, be in a position to report that this is the case, i.e. they have seen improvements with respect to how they are treated and their concerns are addressed. Figure I below indicates the conceptual framework.  This is the relationship between the ultimate goal and the issues which define this goal.

Figure 1: The Conceptual Framework

The achievement of the goal at hand requires a number of procedures to be accomplished. Planning is the first among them, and then there is the development of the system capability. Ultimately, there is the maturity of the system, and it is at this point that access to the market is assessed, together with a couple of related competencies. A system of this nature is meant to ensure that the organization has the best performance, and this is the only way the value for money can be realized.

Figure 2: The Proposed Model of the System

3.      The Process of the Implementation

The process commences with the identification of the issues or the need. Then there is the setting of the objectives, which is to have a system that facilitate quick responses to unforeseen circumstances, save costs, communicate in an effective manner, and even save time. Then there is the identification of options, the analysis of the options, choosing the policy instruments, consulting about the methods, and the coordination of other policies. The idea in this case is to decide on the most appropriate methods at hand. Once this has been achieved, there is the development of the implementation strategy and the resources are then allocated. Eventually, there is the monitoring of the results, and the finally evaluations to determine if the system works as it had been anticipated.

4.      Resolution Central Decision Support System

The Resolution Central Decision Support System is a platform that has the capacity to transform operations in a significant manner. This is based on a couple of factors, and some of them are considered in this paper. The rest of the paper addresses the key benefits, the interdependencies, as well as replacements and upgrades.

4.1  Organization’s Information System

Information technology infrastructure impacts the business operations positively. Being a critical factor in determining the success of a business, our organization proposes to adopt this plan. As this information system is being put in place, the business has made sure that there exists the necessary link of the information technology planning with the specific business plans. It has selected these techniques on the basis of the information system developer’s persuasive power rather than on how logical the idea sounds (Pokorný, 2011). Presently, the organization is in the strategic planning stage after which there will be requirement analysis, allocation of resources as well as project planning. Strategic planning stage involves comparing objectives, strategies and goals of the information system with the goals, objectives as strategies of the organization (International Conference on Information Systems Development, & Linger, 2013).

If there exists a reliable connection between the two, then the system is deemed necessary for the organization to procure. As a result, in the next stage organization will carry out an information requirements analysis. In the analysis the current as well as future needs for information system will be dealt with ensuring that operations and decision-making in the organization is supported. After this, resources to purchase and support the system will be allocated. Lastly, an overall framework is provided in a project planning for development, scheduling plus controlling of the system.

4.2  Key System Benefits

All categories of decision support systems are substantiated and demonstrated as crucial schemes in regards to time saving. This is because there is reduced time taken in decision cycle, timely information for decision making and increased worker productivity. The system also enhances effectiveness in decision making thus enabling businesses to have better and informed decisions (Holsapple & Whinston, 2013). Businesses with decision support systems enjoy the benefit of improved interpersonal communication as well as improved collaboration among individuals involved in decision making. Additionally, an important benefit in the marketing industry is made possible by possessing this system since having competitive advantage is every business’ target (Ray, 2012).

Decision support system helps in saving costs. Studies have shown that through this effective business system, firms are able to make savings on labor in decision making as well as lower technology and infrastructure costs. Notably, decision makers’ increase their satisfaction due to the perceptions created on the reliability of information being used thus, they face less frustrations in regards to their decisions (Ray, 2012). The system also promotes learning and increases organizational control. It makes it possible for employees to learn new concepts and have a better understanding of the business environment. Correspondingly, the system provides business transaction data for monitoring performance as well as ad hoc querying (Sauter, 2011).

5.      Feasibility

The solution requires the availability of expertise and technical resources. These are available since several of the targeted organizations have been using computer systems for various purposes. Indeed, even the stakeholders are computer literate, and they can handle the job. All that is required is proper strategizing and following through with the plans. The fact that this is a new project means that there are also the financial considerations. Organizations go into business to make profits, and this means that they would be unwilling to spend their resources unless this translates into gains.

In case the expected benefits end up being more or equal to the costs, then the system may be considered economically viable. In this case, the decision support system is viable or feasible since the cost of $154,000 is enough to cater for all hardware, software, and training requirements. It is a worth investment since it will streamline operations and also save time. It is anticipated that the savings resulting to this investment would be about 35% of the figures wish would have been spent without it. It means that the entire cost will be covered in less than three years, yet the system will continue to be in use for another 3-4 years. The cost benefit analysis is as indicated in the tables 1 and 2 below:

 

 

Categories

Yrs

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Hardware 30 0 0 0 0
Software 30 0 0 0 0
Personnel 10,000 12,000 14,000 16,000 18,000
Maintenance 0 2,000 3,000 4,000 5,000
Cost at Year End 70,000 24,000 17,000 20,000 23,000
Cumulative Costs 70,000 94,000 111,000 131,000 154,000

Table 1: The Cost of the Implementation

Categories

Yrs

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5
Hardware 15,000 15,000 15,000 15,000 15,000
Software 25,000 35,000 45,000 55,000 65,000
Personnel 40,000 50,000 60,000 70,000 80,000
Maintenance 40,000 90,000 150,000 220,000 300,000

Table 2: The Benefits of the Implementation

Profit = Benefits – Costs

=$300,000 – $154,000

So, the profit in this case is $146,000 over the course of the five years

6.      Importance of an Information System in the Organization

A feasibility study on the information system has been done carried out to assess the risks plus resources available in the organization. The results show that the system can well fit within the organization’s budget. The cost of the system is fair comparing it with other developer’s prices and the technology needed is available. The organization is in need of maximizing its benefits from the information system through exploitation of all its capacities. Additionally, organization’s data input will be processed by the system for the purpose of generating useful knowledge for operations management. Notably, more data is to be added to make information more accurate and consequently increasing the effectiveness of the information system (Pokorný, 2011).

Managers in the organization will be able to communicate rapidly through the usage of the system because it makes the process of information gathering and distribution more efficient. Not only will the system make managers’ email communications quick and effective but, will also use it to store documents in folders that can easily be shared to employees in need of information. Employees can also utilize the system through communicating any additional information as well as making changes to the system tracks. Additionally, operations in the organization will improve because the system will offer more recent and complete information allowing the management to do their operations more efficiently. Record keeping also will be enhanced for financial and regulatory purposes which will enable the organization to identify causes of any problem that may arise and take timely corrective action (International Conference on Information Systems Development, & Linger, 2013).

7.      Interdependences

There exists a close connection between decision support system and a planning support system. The two systems make interactions between decisions and plans where alternatives are considered in decision situations. Plans on the other hand, evaluate actions based on interdependences with other while considering uncertainty. Therefore, decision making and planning are interconnected intimately as reflected on their support system dichotomy (Sauter, 2011). Decision support system also interdependently works with executive information system. It is a crucial interrelation which enables decision makers to keep abreast with the internal and external happenings in the marketing business. The executive information system provides easy access to immediate information which reflects company’s key success factors as well as that of its units (Sauter, 2014).

8.  Stakeholders

A stakeholder is a person or parties that have an interest in a given company who can be affected or rather affect the decision of the business. There are primary stakeholders of any given corporation and they comprise of all those people who have vested interest in the company. For any business operation to run smoothly, there have to be a number of issues which must be implemented for the operation of the business to run smoothly. Information system is key to any given organizations that are competing with other similar businesses.

Introduction of Information infrastructure affects the operation of the business positively. As an important factor in the determination of the overall performance of the organization, therefore, the business has to adopt the system. The business have to ensure that there exists a direct link between the information being put in place and the information system plans of the organization. This will also involve the comparison between the objectives, strategies and the goals of the system in question with the goals, Strategies and goals of the organization.

9. Users

For these objectives to be met a number of issues has to be considered for instance; the expertise of the stakeholders is paramount to ensuring the efficient use of these systems succeeds. The users of this information will be mandated with a task of ensuring that important information reaches the parties who have vested interest. The mangers of the business will be able to make an informed decision regarding the operations and the overall performance of the organization. The computer users will also ensures that they seek important information from the internet on how to run and improve the performance of the business. The users will also be able to advise the mangers of the business on how the system will be beneficial to them since it is going to reduce the cost of production.

10.  Conclusion

Technological advancement that is presently unfolding may in one way or the other make it necessary for a business to replace or upgrade its systems to remain competitive in the market. To be ready for this, a firm makes budget provisions for system replacements and upgrades. The firm can also make use of asset management tools to determine the computers and systems in need of replacement. It is important for the management to communicate with the staff in advance on installation of new software and upgrades (Sauter, 2014). Additionally, the staffs need to be trained on new software and upgrades of the existing software. Most importantly, the business will decide on when to upgrade or replace the system based on their budget, warranty time span, vendor support, upgrades delays, and the magnitude of impacts on outdated systems.

11. Data Dictionary

 

Table Name Column Name Column Type Column Size in Bytes Column Status
Decision support system plan 12878 numeric 6 NOT NULL
  Cost of implementation money 6 NOT NULL
  Benefits of implementation money 4 NOT NULL
  Conceptual framework Figure 2 NOT NULL
  The proposed model of system network Figure 5 NOT NULL
  filler1 char 255 NOT NULL
  filler2 char 255 NOT NULL
  filler3 char 255 NOT NULL
  filler4 char 255 NOT NULL
         

 

Total Size of row in bytes                   1043

Approximate rows/data fage              1

 

 

 

Feasibility analysis for the information system plan

Introduction

Feasibility analysis is the study of the viability of an idea and is an analytical tool which is used during the project planning phase. In our case we are going to check on feasibility analysis for the information system plan. Investing in information technology is one of the ways a firm can use to improve the quality of their products and services or even get new ideas of having a different product in the market. There has been growth in businesses due to increase in firm/individuals investing in information technology. Putting in cash to improve IT/IS is important in each production and all industries should view this as one of the ways of assisting them to achieve their objectives. There are a lot of information technology projects such as new software development; e-commerce and ERP system that firm could invest Inn .the choice of a project a firm or any business owner makes should be in line with their business and economic goals. Therefore feasibility analysis is an important element during the panning phase.

System Objectives

Some of the objectives in information technology (decision support system) are:-

  • To improve effectiveness in decision making for firm directors
  • To support managers decision making processes but should not replace his/her functions
  • Managers’ decision making processes are increased effectively.

Organization Objectives

  • Growth in company revenues
  • Growth in earnings
  • Sales and marketing improvement
  • Human resource
  • Customer service

 

 

Operational Feasibility

In operational feasibility one is able to understand whether the proposed system will to be expected to work out the business problems, take advantage of the opportunities or not. Also in this case it is important to understand on how the new system will fit into the day-to-day operations. For example in HOME DEPORT instead of reducing the number of employees, they should train the existing employees to be able to use the new system, and in that case the organization will be able to produce more or even improve on their services by far. Otherwise during recruitment of new employees home deport should employ computer literate individuals who can be flexible with merging issues and this will save cost a lot in term of training other person.

It will be easier to train existing work force in the new technology than to bring in a technology which is low in standards but understood by the employees.

Technical Feasibility

Adequate performance of the system is considered and also the ability of the organization to construct the proposed system. Things such as technology need for the system existence, how easy it is to build and whether the business will be able to use the system. Also on developing new system, there should be comparison of other providers, check reliability, competitiveness and also limitations. Some of the technical feasibility that one has to look into is:

Project size

Project size people time Success rate
less than $750k 5 7 57%
$750k-$1.6m 13 11 32%
$1.6-$4m 44 16 22%
$4m-$10m 220 27 10%

 

The size of the project can be determined by the time that will be taken to implement the project, number of members, effort that is put in the program me or even the number of departments involved in the project. It is also important to know that the bigger the project the unsuccessful it is.

Project structure

When a project depends on an individual judgment it is likely to have high risk than a highly structured well defined project

Application area

Those who develop system should use standard development tools and also environments. To the user side, they should familiarize with the system development processes so as to understand the need for evolvement.

One thing to remember is that even the high risk projects can be implemented, and therefore what one needs to do is to put projects in categories of high, medium and low risk projects.

Economical Feasibility

Economical evaluation is an important part of any business and mostly when dealing with things that can be quantified or those that can be compared in monetary term. A project involves the expenditure of funds and resources to generate profit or social benefits and for a project to be worthwhile the inputs should be compared with the outputs and in any case output should be higher than input. Below are some of the economic feasibility:

Cost analysis

The organization has to check the cost and benefits associated with the proposed project and the outcome of the same project in terms of the future capital expenditure. The cost of information technology is not only the tangible cost such as labor, hardware and software but also there are other costs such as operational inefficiency. There some of the statements on financial impacts on deploying information technology and these are –

  • Software licensing cost
  • Insurance cost
  • Audit cost
  • Migration cost
  • Testing cost
  • Cost for electricity and cooling
  • Network hardware and software cost
  • Infrastructure cost
  • Hardware and software deployment cost
  • End user computer hardware purchase cost
  • Cost to upgrade

 

Time value of money

PV= FV/ (1+r) n

Where

PV       =          PRESET VALUE OF THE AMMOUNT

FV       =          FUTURE VALUE OF THE AMMOUNT AND PERIOD FROM NOW

r           =          DISCOUNTED RATE

n          =          YEAR THAT THE AMOUNT ACCUR

 

Feasibility

In case of new project there are financial consideration .below is an analysis for cost of implementation

year hardware software personnel maintenance training
1 18400 31500 55000 20000 40000
2 18400 41000 65000 35000 25000
3 18400 50200 75000 64000 22000
4 18400 61400 85000 74000 10000

 

 

 

There are other feasibility such as:-

  • Schedule feasibility
  • Legal feasibility
  • Political feasibility

Conclusion

Advancement in technology forces firms to train their workers on new soft wares and upgrade of the existing software’s and hardware. Also for a firm to meet the market demand it need to upgrade their systems or even replace. This can only be achieved by allocating finances for specifically upgrades of the system Investing in new technology brings more benefits to firm than harm therefore embracing new technology is what all businesses should do.

                                                                       References

  1. Holsapple, C., & Whinston, A.B. (2013). Recent developments in decision support systems. Berlin, Germany: Springer Science & Business Media
  2. International Conference on Information Systems Development, & Linger, H. (2013). Building sustainable information systems: Proceedings of the 2012 International Conference on Information Systems Development. New York: Springer.
  3. Pokorný, J. (2011). Information systems development: Business systems and services: modeling and development. New York: Springer.
  4. Ray, A. (2012). A brief introduction to decision support systems. Munich, Germany: GRIN Verlag
  5. Sauter, V.L. (2011). Decision support systems for business intelligence. Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley
  6. Sauter, V.L. (2014).  Decision support systems for business intelligence. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons

 

  1. Ray, A. (2012). A brief introduction to decision support systems. Munich,
    1. Germane: GRIN Verlag

 

  1. THE CHAOS report (1999), The Standish group international Inc.

 

  1. THE CHAOS report (2004), The Standish group international Inc.